Omni-channel marketing makes it possible for your consumers to have a memorable experience with your products or service.
As technology has evolved and changed in recent years, so too has interactions. In other words, the way in which customers interact with your brand. The days of print, radio, and even television ads are on the decline. In fact, digital marketing and omni-channel marketing are swiftly rising as the new kings.
Your physical storefront, and even your phone lines, are no longer the primary methods by which customers first come into contact with your brand. Instead, they are likely to research your business online first. Then, visit your website. In addition, your consumers might even make purchases online without ever interacting with one of your employees.
As such, the user experience when interacting with your brand needs to be consistent across every channel which your consumers might interact with. This is where omni-channel marketing comes in.
Multi-Channel Marketing vs Omni-Channel Marketing:
A good place to start to understand what omni-channel marketing is by comparing it to the more traditional multi-channel approach. This traditional multi-channel approach is essentially using a variety of different channels. For example, print ads in a magazine and the sign out front of your store. Or even your very own website in order to draw in customers.
This approach is great because you are casting a wide net to generate the most potential views for your brand. However, just having all of these channels is no longer enough in this competitive world.
Omni-channel marketing uses the same approach as multi-channel marketing. For instance, it works by casting a wide net of customers with a variety of ways to interact with your brand. But it distinguishes itself by tying all of these channels together into a single holistic experience.
In addition, it helps create a simple and streamlined user experience. It is streamlined because a potential customer can interact with your brand from any starting point and receive high-quality service consistently when they make their final purchase.
How It Can Improve User Experience:
The simplest way to understand how omni-channel marketing improves your user’s experience is with a brief example. In a traditional multi-channel approach, a customer might search for a product or service you provide online. Then find your website and then decide if they want to make a purchase or not. This interaction is designed to move customers fluidly through a single channel. In this example, it may be a customer using a laptop and performing all these actions on this one device.
However, multi-channel marketing methods ignore the interactions a customer has with your brand. Omni-channel marketing creates a web of interactions. For example, a customer may see a print ad that you’ve recently posted while out and about. The customer, realizing they might need your product, opens up their phone to type in the URL or take a picture of the ad for later.
If they want to save a specific item for later it’s possible they will add it to their shopping cart on their phone so they don’t forget it. From there they end up at home at the end of the day, and probably will see that they had been on your website while going through their phone. So they pull up your website on their PC or laptop to finalize their purchase.
This example may sound convoluted, but this complexity is indicative of how customers actually make their purchases in their day to day. It isn’t a simple one-way road from search to purchase, and omni-channel marketing is all about making that complex process as smooth and streamlined as possible. If done properly your customers will never even notice you did anything at all. They will be left instead with simple satisfaction about how easy it was to do business with your brand.